How to get around Spain during your internship
You’ve just arrived in Spain for your expatriation and you’re wondering what are the best ways to get around the country and through the big cities? The answer is in this article.
Getting around Spain
Spain has a very developed and extensive public transportation system. This makes it possible to perfectly connect all possible destinations in Spain. In this article, we present you with useful information about the connections between the main Spanish cities and about traveling to Barcelona in particular.
Spain is one of the main destinations in Europe and has 59 national and international airports spread throughout the country. Most major cities have a main airport offering domestic and foreign flights.
You can find promotional fares on some routes. Low-cost airlines such as Ryanair, EasyJet and Vueling announce special offers from time to time. There are also other companies such as Air Europa, Albastar or Iberia.
The railroads in Spain
The Spanish railway network has more than 15,000 kilometers of track, of which more than 3,000 kilometers are dedicated to the high-speed train system (AVE – Alta Velocidad Española), which is undergoing rapid development. High-speed trains can travel up to 310 kilometers per hour, which significantly reduces travel time. For example, the travel time from Madrid to Barcelona is about three hours, for a distance of about 504 kilometers.
The rail network includes long-distance, medium-distance and suburban lines, making the train one of the most convenient and fastest ways to travel in Spain.
As for cost, short distance travel tends to be affordable, while long distance travel can be expensive. To get the best prices, be sure to book your tickets in advance at RENFE (Red Nacional de Ferrocarriles Españoles) stations or online at the official Spanish railroad website. You can also travel throughout the country using the Interrail and Eurorail cards.
Subways in Spain
Major Spanish cities such as Madrid, Barcelona, Seville and Malaga have well-developed subway systems. They offer a fast and affordable way to get around, although they are often crowded during rush hour.
Buses in Spain
Buses are a comfortable, inexpensive and reliable way to get around in and between cities, towns and resorts. In major cities, you’ll find modern fleets with new or relatively new vehicles, but in some rural areas you may have to make do with an old, dilapidated bus. You can buy tickets online, at train station vending machines, and once on board. If you are traveling by bus for long distances, it is advisable to book your tickets in advance. Here are some company names that may be useful to you: Alsa, CheckMyBus Movelia, Omio.
Car rental in Spain
You can rent a car in Spain without any worries if you have a valid driving license. The minimum age to rent a car is 21 years old, and for a scooter it is 18 years old. You will need to present your passport or national identity card, your driver’s license and a valid credit card.
Please note that the speed limit is 120 km/h on highways and 100 km/h on two-lane roads. One-lane streets in each direction have a 30 km/h speed limit, while two-lane roads in municipal areas have a 50 km/h speed limit.
Getting around Barcelona
Have you just arrived in Barcelona for your internship abroad or to study? It’s time for you to find out about the different types of transportation that will be useful to you during your internship in Barcelona.
Like any other large city, Barcelona offers different types of transportation that will allow you to get around and visit the city in the best way possible, depending on your interests and needs. However, if it is a short distance, we highly recommend that you discover the city on foot, which will allow you to get to know Barcelona better, passing through its streets, squares and historical places.
For longer distances, you can opt for public transportation (metro, bus, train). Public transportation in Barcelona is very useful because the city has a very large, fast and efficient network for getting around the city.
Every day, 11 lines cross each other in the basement of the metro in Barcelona.
– Monday to Thursday from 5am to midnight
– Friday from 5am to 2am
– Saturday from 5am to Sunday morning without interruption
– Sunday from 00:00 to 24:00
– Public holidays: from 5am to midnight
– Day before public holidays: from 5am to 2am
– December 31, June 23, August 14 and September 24: from 5am and all night without interruption
– December 24: from 5am to 11pm
You can consult the metro map right here: https://www.tmb.cat/ca/transport-barcelona/mapa/metro
In general, buses run from 6am to 10pm. Waiting time is 5 to 10 minutes during rush hour and 10 to 20 minutes the rest of the day.
These night buses (NitBus) run between 10pm and 6am. They have the same fare as the daytime buses and all leave from Plaça Catalunya. The route number of the night buses always begins with the letter N.
You can consult the bus map right here: https://www.tmb.cat/ca/transport-barcelona/mapa/bus
To make your trips easier, you can download the TMB application! It is available on Android and on Iphone. It will allow you to geolocate yourself to show you the nearest stops, the bus lines in the vicinity and to give you the timetables.
Transportation from the airport to the city center
The trip takes about 30 minutes and the ticket price is 5,90 €.
From the airport to the city center, the aerobus will take you to Plaça Catalunya in the center of Barcelona. This square has many bus stops and the metro if you need to go to a specific place right after.
To get from the city center to the airport, you will have to go to the bus stop directly outside the El Corte Inglés store, just on your right if you are coming from the Ramblas. The Aerobus stop is right in front of it. There is usually a staff member present at this bus stop to help you.
There are two separate lines: one for the Aerobus (A1) to Terminal 1 (T1) and one for the Aerobus (A2) to Terminal 2 (T2).
However, if you prefer to have more freedom, you can opt for private transportation. There are plenty of options such as renting a bike or a scooter. The scooter is a very popular means of transportation for Barcelona residents. But if you’re more of a sporty type, we also recommend renting a bike or a scooter that will allow you to move around a bit while enjoying the sights of Barcelona.
Barcelona has a large number of bicycle paths that make it easy to get around the city. And yes, the bike is a good option to get around, it’s fun, green and flexible! We suspect that you don’t have a bike, but that’s not a problem because you can rent one from 6 euros for 2 hours. Here are some addresses:
– Green Bikess Barcelona in the Gotico district: C/ Escudellers, 48 Barcelona.
– Bornbike in the barcenoleta neighborhood: C/ Marquesa, 1 Barcelona.
– Budgets Bikes in the Ribera neighborhood: C/ Estruc, 38 Barcelona.
If you have a NIE you can also download the Bicing application and use Bicing, the public bike on demand service. https://www.bicing.barcelona/es/apps-bicing
However, renting a car to visit Barcelona is not recommended as there is a lot of traffic and not much room to park. But if you decide to organize a weekend outside Barcelona, it can be a good option if you go with several people because you will have better mobility and you will not depend on any schedule.
Frequently asked questions about transportation in Barcelona
What are the different means of transportation in Barcelona?
There are many different means of transport, depending on where you are starting from and where you want to go. You can choose between metro, bus, cab, nitbus, bike or scooter.
Where can I buy the tickets ?
Single tickets for Barcelona transport can be purchased at the ticket offices and machines in the metro, on buses and at TMB information and customer service points.